TOLEDO, Ohio — A stray puppy found starved and abandoned has a new leash on life with his new family.
It's a situation that Lucas County Canine Care and Control doesn't see very often.
But as they explain, it was the pup's will to live that got him this far.
"Sit. Good boy. Easy," said Kristine Hall, Gunner's new mom, who adopted him back in December.
As Gunner plays with some dog toys, it might be hard to believe but he didn't always have the energy he does now.
Toledo Police found the puppy extremely underweight and near death on someone's porch back in November.
"He was in horrible shape. His body condition was some of the worst that we've seen in a really long time. He had clearly been in that state for quite a while It did not happen overnight. And it broke your heart," said Cassie Bloomfield, the Community Outreach Coordinator with Lucas County Canine Care and Control.
It would take months of recovery with a Lucas County Canine Care and Control foster family before Gunner could be himself again.
"He was emaciated, weighing only 24 pounds. Wasn't able to walk. He needed medical treatment for about 5 days until he was stable enough to come into foster care with us," said Megan Newcomer, Gunner's foster mom, with Lucas County Canine Care and Control.
Once finding himself weighing only 24 pounds, Gunner now weighs more than twice that amount and is considered a happy and healthy two-year-old puppy.
And on December 30th, Gunner found his forever home with Hall, her husband, and their golden retriever Lucy.
"Christmas Eve, I was scrolling Facebook and it just like jumped out at me. I don't know what it was. I mean I saw the pictures of him just skin and bones. And I was like in tears," said Hall.
But with her tears came new beginnings, and a new member of the family who truly shows every dog will have its day.
"Just the love that we feel in the family. The home aspect. Just his grateful, you know, his personality and how grateful and appreciative he is. It just really warms your heart," said Hall.
Hall says she plans to get Gunner some training to help make him more confident.
Meantime, LC4 is able to save dogs like Gunner through donations in its Cutie's Fund.
It's an emergency veterinary medical fund you can donate to save hundreds of sick or injured dogs.
You can donate by either visiting LucasCountyDogs.com or stopping by its location on 410 S Erie. Street in Toledo.